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Becker Pleads “Not Guilty” to Charges of Perjury and “Violation of Duty”

Santa Clara Council Member Anthony Becker appeared in court again on May 3 to answer to charges of perjury and violation of duty. Becker was assigned a public defender and then entered a plea of “not guilty.” The judge set a trial setting date for Aug. 2.

Following the hearing, Becker’s newly assigned public defender, Chris Montoya asked the media to allow the legal process to play out.

“In my experience, first impressions of the case are often wrong or incorrect. I’ve found it better to reserve first impressions so that the legal process can unfold,” said Montoya. “We stand firmly by the presumption of innocence, which Mr. Becker is entitled to.”

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Deputy District Attorney Jason Malinsky, representing the DA’s Office in the case, also addressed the media. He was asked by the San Jose Spotlight if, given the unprecedented nature of the case, the District Attorney’s Office was treating Becker’s case differently. Malinsky said no.

“In the DA’s office, every case is important. Every victim that is a victim of a crime…we take very seriously every crime, be it a misdemeanor or all the way up to a murder,” said Malinsky. “We put resources into those cases; they’re all important for protecting the community.

“Look, this is a crime and it is something that is very serious,” Malinsky continued. “I’m part of a unit that’s dedicated to public integrity, law enforcement integrity. And so, we have put significant resources into investigating and prosecuting this case. That’s not to say that this is more important than, say, a murder or sexual assault. But we do take this very seriously.”

However, in a rare move by the District Attorney’s Office, Becker was served a search warrant at his home on the morning of the hearing.

The Weekly asked Malinsky about the search warrant and why it was served on the same day Becker was due in court. Malinsky said he could only comment on things of a public nature, either outlined in the indictment or discussed in court.

When asked if any other charges would be pending against Becker, Malinsky again, reiterated that he could only comment on items of a public nature.

When Becker’s lawyer was asked if serving a search warrant on a person’s day in court is common practice, his reply was simple.

“Generally, no,” said Montoya.

He told The Weekly he had not yet seen a copy of the warrant.

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4 Comments
  1. CSC 1 year ago
    Reply

    “I’m part of a unit that’s dedicated to public integrity, law enforcement integrity. And so, we have put significant resources into investigating and prosecuting this case” – Malinsky
    .
    If charges against Becker are true, he should be prosecuted. But that statement by Malinsky indicates he is either aloof or intentionally misleading the public. There are dozens of criminal claims against peace officers in Santa Clara County that have intentionally gone without investigation. And I suspect if the SCCDA looked into who released the same “Unsportsmanlike Conduct” Civil Grand Jury Report to the S.F Chronicle there might be a few more peace officers or Santa Clara city employees deserving of a at least a misdemeanor charge.

    • Buchser Alum 1 year ago
      Reply

      CSC,
      .
      You seem to assume that someone leaked it to the Chronicle ahead of time. Why do you assume this?
      .
      From my recollection they were the last of all local news publications to run a story about the grand jury report.
      .
      I do agree with you that there is little prosecutorial zeal in pursuing investigations or charges against law enforcement officers and I think that is a shame.

      • CSC 1 year ago
        Reply

        The Unsportsmanlike Conduct report was officially released by the Santa Clara County Civil Grand Jury on Monday October 10, 2022. That fact is not in dispute, correct?
        .
        Three days prior (Friday October 7), the San Francisco Chronicle’s Lance Williams and Ron Kroichick published a report titled “ Grand jury report: City Council majority put 49ers’ interests ahead of Santa Clara’s”. In their article, the two note “ The 60-page report, a copy of which was reviewed by The Chronicle”
        • Not counting the cover page and the last signature page, the official Civil Grand Jury Report is exactly 60 pages. https://www.scscourt.org/court_divisions/civil/cgj/2022/Unsportsmanlike%20Conduct%20-%20Santa%20Clara%20City%20Council.pdf
        • https://www.sfchronicle.com/sports/49ers/article/Grand-Jury-report-Santa-Clara-City-Council-17493830.php
        .
        It doesn’t take the training, education, and experience of a Santa Clara County District Attorney Investigator to realize that at least two people at the San Francisco Chronicle were illegally provided the Civil Grand Jury report ahead of its official/legal publication. Also on Friday October 7, the Santa Clara POA registered a domain name to publish the same report and I recall the report being published on the City’s web site before October 10. It’s highly unlikely that the Chronicle, SCPOA, and city employees in the IT department received the report from Becker.

        • Buchser Alum 1 year ago
          Reply

          CSC,
          .
          What you may not know is that the San Jose Spotlight had an article published about the report around 9 AM on Friday October 7, 2023. This article included an embedded and downloadable copy of the entire report.
          .
          And this publication The Silicon Valley Voice had an article up at 3 AM.
          .
          The Chronicle did not need to have the report leaked to them. They just needed to read the article here on Silicon Valley Voice that resulted from a leak on October 6, 2023, and could have gotten more details and specifics confirmed by the San Jose Spotlight’s article.
          .
          The Chronicle from my recollection did not have an article up about the grand jury report until the early afternoon.
          .
          As for the SCPOA registering a domain name that is a matter of public record and it was done after 2 PM on 10/7/23.
          .
          It was done around five hours after San Jose Spotlight made the whole report available for download to the entire public. The SCPOA did not need a city hall leak in order to register “grandjuryreport.com” five hours after Ramona Giwargis of the San Jose Spotlight made the grand jury report downloadable to every Tom Dick and Harry.
          .
          Now that you have been helped out with the full facts I think you will agree that it does not take the training education and experience of a Santa Clara County District Attorney Investigator to realize that the Silicon Valley Voice and San Jose Spotlight made the leaked report public so early that they were the likely source for the SCPOA and Chronicle having a reaction hours later.
          .
          It also does not take a professional investigator to surmise that Anthony Becker is a prime candidate for any Santa Clara city hall leak that benefits the Forty Niners. The Silicon Valley Voice and San Jose Spotlight were very consistent in providing Becker with favorable coverage. We know that Carolyn Schuk of the Silicon Valley Voice has ghostwritten letters for Becker to submit to be official city pronouncements. And we know that Becker has a direct line of communication to Ramona Giwargis and the San Jose Spotlight which also has published uniformly favorable coverage of Becker.
          .
          Giwargis’s piece for the San Jose Spotlight also contained lengthy quotations from Rahul Chandhok of the Forty Niners and thus served as the Forty Niners mouthpiece to publish attacks on the grand jury members and report three days before the reports release.
          .
          And several hours before the Chronicle had an article up or the SCPOA had a website registered. And the SCPOA’s website had no content on 10/7. I have seen no sign of content on the domain they registered until several days after the official release of the report.
          .
          They may not have needed to wait that long given that Ramona Giwargis of the San Jose Spotlight leaked the report to the general public on the morning of 10/7 seemingly thanks to Anthony Becker.

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